Thursday, September 18, 2014


She was bleeding when she died,
Not the same way as the previous death for which we had cried,
Not the same way Tomah’s mother had lost her life.
No, not  the way the strange woman was stoned after she caused strife.
It was not the same picture as the one I saw that day,
A picture of Tomah’s mother lying on the ground bleeding and doctor having nothing to say,
Nothing to say because her leg was loose from the hip after her horror accident.
Truly no one would ever forget that incident.
It was not the same memory I carried with me,
A memory of a woman who had been caught stealing and stoned, you see,
They were all bleeding when they died.
They had all been bleeding when they last sighed.

I still remember how the severe headaches  and muscle pains could not stop,
How they made her cringe her face as if she was about to drop,
And daddy bought her some panadol like he always did when she had an ache.
I remember how we made fun of her fever, That  it made her shake,
Shake like a cassava leaf in the dry harmattan wind.
How her temperatures would burn a new born baby, like the one’s she helped to bring to birth and their mothers grinned.
Then she started vomiting and could no longer hold her bowels,
Everything was a witness to her sickness, the sheets, the clothes and the towels.
She said it was some kind of bad omen,
The last baby she had mid-wifed had left the mother bleeding to death after naming him Ken.
Daddy said it was Malaria,
He said most people were diagnosed with it after they had diarrhea.

Then the people from Monrovia came with a poster,
It had symptoms of this disease people said was an impostor.
By this time daddy had become weak and almost had symptoms like the ones mummy had.
The hospitals were far and getting transport to the health centre was hard.
The people from Monrovia finally came to our house.
They were dressed as if they were from harvesting honey, I thought it was because they had seen a mouse,
Mice were all over, feeding on anything.
Then, something happened. Something..
Mummy started bleeding from every orifice on her body.
Like Tomah’s mother, she was helpless,
And soon enough she lay there lifeless.
I thank God daddy and I survived the disease that was not malaria
As for her, she was bleeding when she died, it was Ebola.


Grace and peace to all who lost their loved ones to Ebola.


  1. Wow, Emma, you definitely are a great writer and I'm a big fan of your work. First, I'm impressed by your use of grammar and your way with words. The rhyme scheme there gives the article some exquisite poetic feel culminating to nothing but sheer appreciation and enjoyment to the reader. Second, it is saddening how Ebola has and still continues to claim lives in our sister nations. You paint a vivid image of how Ebola painfully takes lives. That really touched me. May God remember those who've lost and those who are suffering. This scourge should really be brought to a grinding halt.

  2. Thanks Wachira and glory to God. We pray for healing.